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Jaguar considering Project 7 F-Type successor

Custom building next limited series reportedly not in consideration

Published: April 18, 2016, 7:00 AM
Updated: May 11, 2016, 2:55 PM

Jaguar Project 7

Jaguar has stated it plans to make a successor to the wildly successful Project 7 F-Type derivative, but unlike other new or upcoming supercars, it is not planning on getting into the custom-made game.

The first performance car from Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations, the Project 7 debuted at the 2014 Goodwood Festival of Speed and a week later was running in the Le Mans Classic in homage to the 60th anniversary of the 3-time Le Mans winning D-Type.

Its supercharged 5.0-litre V-8 produced 567 hp and 501 lb-ft of torque, which took the car to 100 km/h in under four seconds. Only 250 were made, a number the company admits may have been conservative.

John Edwards, head of Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations, told British magazine Auto Express that the 250 limited run for the Project 7 was “plucked … out of thin air,” adding that he had to guarantee a number in order to get the go-ahead to proceed with the hand-built cars. In light of how quickly the run sold out, he admits that there could have been double that number built and sold.

So the new project will have to build on its predecessor’s success but Edwards says building cars to order is not in the cards, even though designer Ian Callum says that is something that bears investigating in order to make it more of a personal car and, presumably, drive up the price of desirability.

To make a car so much more superior to the Project 7 would require a substantial investment and the return will also have to be substantial to make it success. Callum told Auto Express that charging a million pounds for a supercar like the C-X75, with a run limited to 200 (tops), is a difficult business case to make, so there has to be something really special about a successor to the Project 7.

The supercharged powertrain of the limited edition car is now available in the F-Type SVR, so that part of exclusivity is gone, and Edwards admits that his company is mandated to creating production cars, not re-engineering and producing bespoke versions.

Edwards told Auto Express that “custom bodies are not our plan; we want to push the cosmetics of the car to the limit.”